Most of the startup founders, I know are very ethical – they hate spamming people. And sometimes, when they even try to spam (to several Y!/G groups etc) they are shot down by the community.
And the not-so-obvious answer is “It depends“.
Let’s look at how successful social networks successfully created that buzz (i.e. spammed):
- MySpace used their ResponseBase email marketing list of 100 million+ people to send for first users.
- Facebook spammed all the Harvard email lists to get the first 2,000 users in a day.
- Hi5 used their previous dating site to send a considerable amount of traffic to.
- Bebo used their original site BirthdayAlarm.com to have a huge user base to start with.
- Friendster and Orkut, started naturally and virally through a very limited invite system. [source]
So, will you really think twice before spamming?
What’s really beneficial about spamming is that if done well, one can attract the not-so-tech-savvy users (who doesn’t care about spamming) and isn’t that your typical user base? Your initial users?
What’s your opinion?